We had a friend from France staying with us last month and since she had never set foot in the Northwest, we took her sightseeing. Her visit coincided with some medical events for me though, so that all we could take were short day trips. She nevertheless fell in love with what she saw and said she wished more people in France and across the world knew that there was more to the United States than soaring glass towers, plastic-wrapped food, urban blight and gun violence.
On this day which marks the ten-month anniversary of one of my adopted country's darkest moments, a horrific event which claimed the lives of twenty first-graders, including my grandson Noah, and of six of the grown-ups working at their school, I want to share some of the light of this other America. I don't remember whether or not Noah liked beets (probably not), but he loved bread (with no butter on it), garlic, pumpkins and butterflies, and he loved color. He also greatly enjoyed walking the drift logs when he visited the beach in West Seattle. These images are for him.